CAPTAIN Carys Phillips hopes that Wales Women will get a packed Altrad Stadium on their feet when they kick off their Six Nations campaign against champions France tonight.

The hooker will lead the charge in the daunting encounter with the French, who are ranked third in the world and won the tournament with a Grand Slam last year.

A bumper crowd is expected in Montpellier (kick-off 8pm) with Phillips hoping Wales rise to the occasion.

"Two years ago we played in front of 10,000 and having France, Grand Slam champions, first up is even better," said the 26-year-old.

"It will be a great experience playing in that atmosphere in Montpellier and that is important building towards 2021.

"It will be fantastic and we have created a lot of noise and chaos in training to try and prepare for the feel of this game.

"But the French crowd just love their rugby and cheer good play whoever it comes from, hopefully it will be from us!"

Last year France secured the Grand Slam with a 38-3, six-try win in Colwyn Bay.

That condemned Phillips & Co to last place but they head into the 2019 tournament on the back of an encouraging autumn, which featured wins against South Africa and Hong Kong plus a battling effort against Canada.

Phillips said: "France are the champions and to have them first up is a massive challenge but it will be an indicator of where we are at as a team.

"A successful autumn campaign has given us confidence and we are looking forward to testing ourselves against them.

"One of the bigt aspects of French rugby is physicality and we know that we have to front up to that challenge and battle hard against them."

Wales Women: Lauren Smyth (Ospreys); Jasmine Joyce (Scarlets), Hannah Jones (Scarlets), Alicia McComish (Dragons), Lisa Neumann (RGC); Robyn Wilkins (Blues), Keira Bevan (Ospreys); Caryl Thomas (Dragons), Carys Phillips (capt, Ospreys), Amy Evans (Ospreys), Siwan Lillicrap (Ospreys), Mel Clay (Ospreys), Alisha Butchers (Scarlets) Manon Johnes (Blues), Bethan Lewis (Dragons)

Replacements: Kelsey Jones (Ospreys), Cara Hope (Ospreys), Cerys Hale (Dragons), Natalia John (Ospreys), Alex Callender (Scarlets), Ffion Lewis (Scarlets); Elinor Snowsill (Bristol) Jess Kavanagh (RGC).